Dear Experienced Caregivers,
I am of the belief that we have a crisis on our hands. And this is important. Parenting is not living up to the expectations many of us had for it. In fact, it has been full of disappointments and unexpected challenges. I, for one, thought I would have a whole lot more fun and be a whole lot better at this parenting thing than I actually am. Don’t get me wrong, I understood it would be hard, but I must not have read the fine print, because I didn’t know that it would be this hard.
I think I’ve lost my parenting mojo.
Raise your hand if any of these things are familiar to you:
- Staying late at work to avoid the hassles at home.
- Preferring to play a game on your phone than play with your kids.
- Immersing yourself in errands and projects so as to avoid unstructured time with your children.
- Escaping to your home bathroom, at times, because you need a “moment” that has nothing to do with a movement.
- Agreeing to allow video game play or other screen time at otherwise restricted times because it will give you breathing room.
Did you raise your hand to at least one? Then you may have lost your parenting mojo, too. If you’re feeling uninspired and lacking joy in your relationship with your child, then let me share a secret that helps me find my parenting mojo again each and every time.
Give them your full attention. That’s the secret ingredient. The exact thing that you may have been avoiding or finding difficult, is the thing that will bring you back to a connected place with them.
If you are the parent or caregiver of multiple children, schedule a special time with each. Let your child choose a developmentally-appropriate screen-free activity for 20 minutes. And then? Play with them. Really notice them– their mannerisms, the way that their hair curls behind one ear, their enjoyment (or lack thereof) in the activity. Don’t judge any of it, just notice. No running off to the bathroom. No important calls or texts. No avoiding.
When’s the last time that you were fully present with your child? When’s the last time that you allowed yourself to play?
At Intuition Wellness Center we specialize in integrated behavioral health services and wellness programs for children, young adults and families and supporting other like-minded professionals in doing good work. We offer parent education seminars, wellness classes and other supportive services. If you think you would like some extra support, call us. Call 520-333-3320 for a free phone consultation.
Written By: Dr. Brandy Baker, Co-Founder and Clinical & Training Director at Intuition Wellness Center